Michael J Malone: taking male spousal abuse seriously

The author of A Suitable Lie explains the shocking real-life stories that inspired his ‘terrifying love story’ and wonders why his novel’s subject is often taken so lightly.

Michael Malone recounts a day when one of his new team turned up for work with a black eye. People joked that he should know better by now than to argue with his wife. It was apparent from his reluctant smile that this was what had happened.

He says; ‘I couldn’t believe that they found this funny and in a quiet moment I asked if he needed to talk to someone. What he subsequently described was a pattern of violence I’ve heard described over and over again.’

Malone states he came across the British Crime Survey of 1999 and one of the first things he read was that domestic violence was equally likely to happen to men and women: 4.2% of both male and female respondents said they’d experienced domestic abuse from a current or previous partner in the preceding year. (The lifetime experience of the crime was 23% for women and 15% for men). For the full report, follow the link below:


Awareness of male victims was and still is poor and Michael Malone considered how people had laughed at his colleague with his black eye. Later research explained how society often views women’s violence against their male partner as “understandable, pardonable and sometimes humorous”. For more on this research, follow link below:


“In any official literature I came across the perpetrator was​ (and still is)​ always described as ‘he’’

Malone states that a newspaper editor refused to believe in the existence of male spousal abuse, despite the presence of links to research from the Office of National Statistics showing 4% of men and 8.2% of women were estimated to have experienced domestic abuse in 2014/15. For these more recent statistics, follow the link below:


Looking back at his research folder, Malone has clippings from newspapers all over the world arguing that we need to take battered husbands more seriously. The clippings are mostly from 1999 and 2000. But all these years later, it appears nothing has changed.

For more on this story, visit the Guardian:


Jo: Freedom Shropshire Team.

Enough is Enough – Why the Church has to stop enabling abusive men

Gary Thomas is an author and blogger and tackles in his blog – ‘Enough is Enough – Why the Church has to stop enabling Abusive Men’ how the Church should respond to domestic violence and abuse in Christian homes.

The author makes many useful points and provides some helpful advice and guidance for Christian victims and their families, for professionals working with these families and for the Church.

Gary makes this invaluable point:

‘Christian leaders and friends, we have to see that some evil men are using their wives’ Christian guilt and our teaching about the sanctity of marriage as a weapon to keep harming them. I can’t help feeling that if more women started saying, “This is over” and were backed up by a church that enabled them to escape instead of enabling the abuse to continue, other men in the church, tempted toward the same behaviour, might finally wake up and change their ways.’

To read the full blog, follow the link below:


Andy: Freedom Shropshire Team.

Revealed: GPs charging domestic violence survivors £100+ to sign legal aid forms

People who have suffered domestic violence and want to take their case to court can be charged more than £100 to get their GP to support their legal aid application – and could even pay up to £300 – a MoneySavingExpert.com investigation reveals.

Specialist family law solicitors from across the country have told MoneySavingExpert.com many now face the charges after changes to the qualifying criteria for legal aid three years ago.

Since 2013 applicants for legal aid have had to provide some form of evidence they or their children have experienced domestic violence or abuse, and many go to their GP for help. Yet GPs aren’t paid for this by the NHS, and so can choose to charge patients.

Since the changes came into effect there have been 25,000 applications for legal aid backed by evidence of domestic abuse, though it’s not known how many of these were supported by GPs or whether they charged.

For more on this story, visit MoneySavingExpert.com website:


Andy: Freedom Shropshire Team.

Freedom Shropshire Newsletter, Edition 27, November 2016

Freedom Shropshire Newsletter, Edition 27, November 2016.

To view/download the latest Newsletter, simply click on the image below!

Jo Berry: Freedom Shropshire Team.

West Mercia Police supports White Ribbon

West Mercia Police is raising awareness about domestic abuse and coercive, controlling behaviour during the White Ribbon Campaign, so that men and women who are suffering, know how and where to seek advice and support.

Coercive behaviour is an act or a pattern of acts of assault, threats, humiliation, intimidation or other abuse that is used to harm, punish or frighten someone.

It can include the abuser preventing their partner or family member from having friendships or hobbies, humiliating or intimidating them, refusing them access to money and determining many aspects of their everyday life, such as when they are allowed to eat and sleep.

For more on this story, visit the West Mercia Police website:


Jo: Freedom Shropshire Team.

White Ribbon Campaign 2016 – stand up against male violence against women and girls

There are many agencies and organisations across Shropshire joining together to pledge their support this year for the White Ribbon Campaign, including  Health services, Probation services, West Mercia Police, Housing Associations and Children’s Services.

The White Ribbon Campaign is the largest effort in the world where men are working to end men’s violence against women. It started in Canada in 1991, came to the UK in 2004 and is now active in more than 60 countries.

White Ribbon Campaign, 2015, Domestic Abuse Facts

The international campaign which runs from 25 November for 16 days is inviting Shropshire Men, Women and Children to support the campaign by wearing a white ribbon to make this pledge:

Never to commit, condone or remain silent about violence against women.

In the UK, 45% of women have experienced some form of domestic abuse and sexual violence or stalking. And there are still on average 2 women a week in England and Wales killed by their violent partner or ex-partner.

On  25th November, there will be displays at Shirehall in Shrewsbury providing white ribbons, badges. These displays will remain for the duration of the 16 days of action for all in Shropshire to visit. All Welcome!

In Ludlow, as a tribute to victims of domestic abuse, the South Shropshire Domestic Violence Network have arranged a vigil in St Laurence’s Church on Friday 2nd December from 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. which will be followed by a stand in Castle Square from 10 am onwards with White Ribbon resources being made available to Ludlow Sixth Form College students.

Jo Berry, Domestic Violence Prevention Coordinator in Public Health at Shropshire Council adds:

“Whilst the White Ribbon campaign nationally is focused on ending violence against women and girls and is directed at men, we in Shropshire want to eliminate violence against all sexes, recognising that it has devastating effects on women, men and children.”

If you are concerned about domestic abuse and need advice you can call two main numbers, for male victims call  Mankind 01823 334244  or the Men’s Adviceline 0808 801 0327 and for female victims call the National Helpline 0808 200 0247 or the local Helpline 0800 783 1359 (Shropshire, Herefordshire, Telford & Wrekin)

To access relevant and up to date guidance and advice on Domestic Abuse and Violence and find out about services offered within Shropshire, visit the Freedom Shropshire website:


White Ribbon Campaign 2016

Jo: Freedom Shropshire Team.

White Ribbon Campaign UK joined UK SAYS NO MORE

White Ribbon Campaign has joined with UK SAYS NO MORE – a national campaign to raise awareness to end domestic violence and sexual assault, fronted by London-based charity Hestia and NO MORE in the United States.

For more on UK SAY NO MORE, follow link below:


The White Ribbon campaign is now part of an international network of non-profit organisations, who SAY NO to domestic violence and sexual assault.

To mark the start of the partnership, the CEO David Bartlett wrote a blog for UK SAYS NO MORE about why White Ribbon Day – 25th November – should give us all hope for a future in which men no longer feel they have to prove their manhood by being aggressive, successful alpha males.

To read this blog about White Ribbon Day, visit the UK SAYS NO MORE website


Jo: Freedom Shropshire Team.

16 Days of Action: Programme

For a PDF document you can share, save or print just click on the images below:



Jo: Freedom Shropshire Team.

Recover! Shropshire DAAT Newsletter, November 2016

For the latest DAAT newsletter – “Recover!” simply click on the image below for a file you can share, save or print.


Jo: Freedom Shropshire Team.

25th November – White Ribbon Day

25th November – White Ribbon Day


The big day is fast approaching – International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, also known as White Ribbon Day, on 25th November!

From this date, until the 10th December, we encourage everyone – and especially men and boys – to participate in the 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence. This period is a time to spur action to end violence against women and girls around the world.

For further information and ideas please click on the image above, or visit White Ribbon Campaign Blog

Jo: Freedom Shropshire Team.